Judd Apatow has confirmed that his wife, actress Leslie Mann and two daughters, Maude and Iris, have left him for their “This is 40” co-star Paul Rudd, who all formed an intense connection while reprising their role of the wealthy Brentwood family they played in 2007’s “Knocked Up.”
According to Mann, she made her decision to leave her husband after attending the premiere of “This is 40,” which writer-director Apatow based on his own marriage to Mann, and which chronicles a shallow married couple who do nothing but complain, whine and fight.
“I never realized how unhappy my family was until I watched us re-enacting our lives on screen with Paul Rudd,” Mann said. “Luckily, Paul told me and the girls, we didn’t need to live like this anymore and invited us to move in with him.”
Mann says that since leaving Apatow and moving in to Rudd’s house, she has caught him lurking around outside the house, forcing them to get a restraining order against Apatow, who admits he was caught off-guard by his wife’s actions.
“This is almost as devastating as ‘This is 40′ not getting any Golden Globes nominations,” Apatow told Hollywood & Swine. “Perhaps if I had hired a casting director to find other actors besides my wife and children, this never would’ve happened.”
Ironically, Apatow was so paranoid of another man stealing his wife and his kids from him while he was away from home directing movies that he forced Universal to cast them in the major roles in the last three films he directed, “Knocked Up,” “Funny People” and “This is 40.”
“I warned Judd that nothing good would ever come from him putting his wife and kids in every movie he directed,” “This is 40” co-star Albert Brooks said. “But I was referring to him directing another bomb like ‘Funny People,’ not Paul Rudd stealing his family.”
Apatow is reportedly channeling his devastation into his writing, and has started work on his latest screenplay, “The Untitled Third Installment of the Knocked up Trilogy,” in which Paul Rudd’s character dies a horrible slow death. Apatow hopes to begin shooting the film early next year, although Universal Pictures hasn’t made a decision whether or not to greenlight the project.
“We told Judd if the Academy Awards screeners of ‘This is 40’ he forced us to send out actually get his film one Oscar nomination, then we’ll greenlight the movie,” a Universal spokesperson said. “In other words, we will not be making his movie.”